After the Growing Pains actor received backlash for hosting caroling events in California amid stay-at-home orders, the Full House alum took to Twitter to make it clear she was not involved.
"I did not attend any recent caroling events," the 44-year-old actress wrote. "Also, I choose to follow the greater guidelines by wearing a mask and social distance when I'm in public."
However, Candace noted she did not "appreciate the vile tweets" about her family. "I believe respectful dialogue is the key to being heard," she continued. "Stay safe."
Kirk hosted the event outside of The Oaks Mall in Thousand Oaks, Calif. on Tuesday, Dec. 22. KABC-TV reported there appeared to be about 75 to 100 people in attendance. Footage showed the carolers standing close together, with many of them not wearing masks and thus breaking the state's mandate amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"We do not condone this irresponsible - yet constitutionally protected - peaceful protest event planned," a statement posted to the mall's Twitter account read. "We share your concern and have notified the Sheriff's office. As well, we have reached out to the event planner to ask that they do not use The Oaks as their venue."
A representative for Kirk told People the gathering was organized by community members and local churches and that face masks and social distancing were encouraged. The 50-year-old TV star released his own statement, as well.
"During this awful pandemic, people are longing for hope and encouragement and we want to offer that to them...we encourage attendees [to] wear masks and the freedom to socially distance, but we won't deny our neighbors the opportunity to sing Christmas carols outside in whatever manner they choose," Kirk told the magazine. "Spirits were lifted and people were encouraged! This is America—the land of the free and the home of the brave."
This wasn't the first caroling event Kirk had hosted. He also attended one last week and posted photos from the protests.
"We are going to be celebrating our God-given liberties, our constitutionally protected rights at this time at Christmas to sing Christmas songs to gather, to assemble, and to sing about the birth of our savior," he said in a video posted before the protest.
He also stated his intent to hold future gatherings during an interview last week.
"This is the land of the free and the home of the brave, and there are thousands and thousands of people in our community who would rather not suffer in isolation and come out to sing and express their gratitude," he said. "Because we believe there is immunity in community, but there is desolation in isolation. And I want to give people hope."
However, many followers have criticized Kirk for hosting the caroling event amid the coronavirus pandemic. "I assume you'll be paying the medical expenses for all attendees who get Covid?" one commenter wrote on Instagram. Added another, "Hope you are held responsible for any covid cases that come out of this. You are so selfish!"
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